On August 8, 2022, the pro-Islamic State (ISIS) Moata News Agency released a poster in English and Arabic versions titled “Harvest of African Christians,” summarizing the “outcomes of the operations of two months (June & July) which targeted villages and cities of Christians” in Africa.[1] The poster depicts a burning church, a handgun dripping blood, and a graphic image of a dead man wearing a cross around his neck.

The poster provides the following tally for attacks by the Islamic State Central Africa Province (ISCAP), Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP), and Islamic State Mozambique Province (ISMP) during June and July: Almost 190 Christians were killed, and 13 churches and hundreds of houses burned. Fifty-five percent of the attacks occurred in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC); 26% in Mozambique; 13% in Nigeria; and 6% in Cameroon.

A major component of ISIS’ strategy in Africa, particularly in the DRC, Mozambique, and Nigeria, has been targeting Christian civilians to provoke them into fleeing the areas where the jihadi organization operates.[2] ISIS has also targeted Christian noncombatants in other countries, such as Libya and the Philippines.[3]

In recent months, three of ISIS’ four active provinces in Africa – ISCAP, ISWAP, and ISMP, but not the Islamic State Sahel Province, where few Christians live – have escalated attacks on Christians, entering Christian-majority villages, setting fire to homes and churches, and killing locals by beheading or shooting.[4] A video released  in June 2022 by the Islamic State Syria Province threatened Christians, particularly in Africa, that if they did not “repent” they would be killed, along with their wives and children.[5]

[1]  Telegram, August 8, 2022.

[2]  See MEMRI JTTM Report: Slaughtering Christians – Islamic State Central Africa Province’s (ISCAP) Regular Tactic For Expansion, April 2, 2021.

[3]  See MEMRI JTTM Reports: Islamic State (ISIS) Video Features Beheading Of 21 Copts In Libya, February 15, 2015; and Overview Of Islamic State East Asia Province (ISEAP) Activity In The Philippines Since August 2021 – Part I: Overview Of Recent Attacks, July 20, 2022.

[4]  See MEMRI JTTM Reports: Warning – Graphic: ISIS In Mozambique Releases Photographic Documentation Of Recent Attacks Against Christian Villages In The Northeast, June 7, 2022; Islamic State (ISIS) Continues Attacks Against Christians In Northeastern Mozambique, Claims They Have Caused A Wave Of Christian Displacement From The Region, June 12, 2022; WARNING — GRAPHIC: ISIS Escalates Attacks In Africa, Publishes Photos Of Dismembered, Decapitated Christians, June 15, 2022; Islamic State In West Africa (ISWAP) Carries Out Attack Against Christians In Cameroon, First In The Country Since February 2022, June 20, 2022; and Islamic State (ISIS) Continues Attacks Against Christians In Northeastern Mozambique, Publishes Images Of Burning Houses And Victims, August 4, 2022.

[5]  See MEMRI JTTM Report: In Video, ISIS In Syria Calls On African Operatives To Increase Attacks, Threatens Christians, Incites Nigerian Muslims To Wage Jihad Against Government, June 24, 2022.